GdS: Pioli has new solution in mind to unlock De Ketelaere psychologically and tactically

By Oliver Fisher -

One of the missions that Stefano Pioli will look to achieve during the winter break will be to get Charles De Ketelaere feeling full of confidence again ahead of the restart.

After a disappointing World Cup in his Belgium, De Ketelaere returned to training with Milan in Dubai yesterday. The first part of the season was well below expectations and for this Pioli wants to take advantage of the break to try and get the best out of him.

According to La Gazzetta dello Sport (via MilanNews), Pioli welcomed the Belgian back to training yesterday and on both Tuesday and Wednesday he spoke to Charles during training, reiterating his great confidence and his willingness to bet heavily on him also in the second part of this season.

De Ketelaere needs to find a way to forget about pressure that has stifled him since he arrived at the club, given the price tag involved to sign him from Club Brugge and the long negotiation.

The psychological aspect is fundamental, but the tactical question is also important, as Pioli is in fact thinking of moving him closer to the goal and freeing him from some tactical obligations. So far De Ketelaere has not scored since he’s been at Milan and the feeling is that a goal might be a spark.

Tags AC Milan Charles De Ketelaere


  1. This is going to be easier said then done. In the 4-2-3-1 the no.10 has to help out in midfield or the team gets outmaneuvered in midfield. To push De Ketelaere more towards goal will require a total change of formation , and he is not evolved enough to play no. 9 (although that might be his future position).Adli is a natural no.10 and should be given a chance. De Keta requires time to specialize in a single position , some have suggested he would do well in a 3 man midfield if he can get a little better defensively.

  2. Put Adli in the middle and CDK out on the right. He can and has played there before. There is less pressure to dictate play there, and he will surely do no worse than the current two options, therefore will get a bit of confidence playing there.

  3. I don’t feel that our 4-2-3-1 formation brings out the best of the type of players we currently have. It’s given positive results only because Pioli has directed the hell out of that formation, and it speaks volume about his talent and the team’s drive, but to be honest it’s kinda dated for Champions League and most of our players are a better fit for a 4-3-3 formation.

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